Saturday, 20 August 2011
I first met C. at an event our Catholic schools worked together to create for the 8th graders in our diocese. Pam Stenzel (I loved her, but I wasn't kidding about the whole Abstinence for All campaign at my Catholic school) was the speaker, and C. and I talked after the program on how effective these programs really were for us.
After meeting C., we maintained our friendship online mostly, sometimes bumping into each other during other events. One time when I went to hang out with him at the mall, he told me he had something to give me.
I was excited for this unexpected goodie. It a treble clef paper clip. I had never seen one before, and he told me he made it for me instead of just buying one. So I didn't forget the passion I thought I was losing for the piano. Unfortunately, I lost that treble clef paper clip the same night.
C. and I lost touch with each other for the next two years, save for the occasional Facebook comment and message which always evolved into hours of discussion, an abrupt stop, and then months of not talking again.
Randomly during my junior year of high school, C. asked me to go to his senior prom.
His prom would have been the third prom I went to at that point. The first two turned out to be really anticlimactic and disappointing, so I was scared this one would be as well. As the date grew closer and closer though, I was excited to spend the night with someone who never gave me drama.
The night felt magical, and C. was a real gentleman about everything. He bought me the perfect corsage, paid for my half of the bid even after I offered to chip in, and opened the car door for me to get out like a chauffeur would. His prom was at the most beautiful banquet hall I've ever seen to this date, and had a great five course meal served.
While C. was on the dance floor being his quirky self, break-dancing and doing cartwheels in one of those circles that form post-Percolator, I was sitting at our table next to his best friend. I mentioned something about how C. kept trying to hold my hand the whole night, but I kept letting go because I felt uncomfortable with it.
His friend said, "it's because he actually likes you."
"Oh shit, really?! We don't even hang out or talk as often as we used to..."
"It doesn't mean that those few conversations aren't loaded. Don't tell him I told you."
I suddenly felt really terrible that C. had watched and heard me bitch about all the jerks I dated while he wanted a chance. Not that he ever directly told me before then, but I was really hoping he wasn't expecting anything more to come after his prom night.
I thought back to all the conversations I could remember having with C. They were cryptic, quirky, and always philosophical. I trusted him with my poetry and he let me listen to his music all the time. Whenever we needed honest feedback, we'd shoot each other a Facebook message. In retrospect, he had written up various riddles (I love riddles) about "one of his friends liking me" but maybe it was his way of trying to tell me that he actually did.
After the drive back home from his prom, C. walked me back to my door, where my super strict, no-boys-are-allowed-to-touch-my-daughter-type father was waiting for me. He was holding onto my hand which I didn't want to do nor have my father see, but then I realized he was trying to push something into my fist. I kept my fist clenched until I walked up the stairs to my room.
When I unclenched my fist, I was surprised to see he gave me another treble clef paper clip.
He texted me a few minutes later saying, "we're molding music in our hands."
"Thanks for this. I have to confess though... I lost the first one you gave me."
"I gave you one before? Oh, well, it just goes to show that music is never lost."
I bit my lip as I read that last message from him and confronted him the next day about how he felt so I could make sure I wasn't giving him the wrong idea. He said he knew I didn't return his affection the way he'd have liked and didn't bother telling me. He had this calm way of being perceptive all the time and went on to tell me that I didn't have to feel bad--he was glad we were still able to be friends after all those years.
Do you have any mementos from a old crush? Ever find random objects in your room that you forgot about, but associate with certain memories when you find it?